As China battles Covid, industrial profits drop

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China’s industrial activity saw a further drop in January-October period as the second largest economy in the world grappled with Covid outbreaks. The strict lockdowns in accordance with China’s tough ‘Zero-Covid’ policy has resulted in dampened economic activity.

Industrial profits fell 3.0% in the first 10 months of 2022 from a year earlier. That compares with a 2.3% drop for January-September, National Bureau of Statistics data released on Sunday showed.

The bureau has not reported standalone monthly figures since July.

Profits declined for 22 of China’s 41 major industrial sectors.

“Recent outbreaks of domestic epidemics have frequently occurred, the risk of global economic recession has intensified, and industrial enterprises are facing greater pressure,” the bureau said in a statement.

The downbeat data for the world’s second-largest economy also reflects a debt payment crisis within the country’s property sector and a sharp slowdown in consumer spending.

China is one of the only big economies still grappling with Covid outbreaks. Saturday (November 27) was fourth straight day when the country logged record number of Covid cases.

There were 39,791 new Covid cases on november 26. Out of the detected cases, 3709 were symptomatic while 36,082 were asymptomatic. 

Just a day earlier, 35,183 new cases had been detected. Out of these 3474 were symptomatic while 31,709 were asymptomatic.

(With inputs from agencies)

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